Malawi issues arrest warrant for former president

Joyce Banda

Malawi police have issued a warrant for the arrest of former president Joyce Banda in connection with the country’s “Cashgate” corruption scandal, which involved large-scale looting of government coffers.

“Malawi fiscal and fraud police have unearthed credible evidence which raises reasonable suspicion that the former president committed offences relating to abuse of office and money laundering,” national police spokesperson, James Kadadzera told AFP.

Banda has been living in self-imposed exile since she lost to President Peter Mutharika in the 2014 election.

Kadadzera said Banda is “suspected of abusing her office” in the Cashgate scandal.

He said the warrant for her arrest came into “force” from Monday.

Cashgate is the biggest financial scandal in Malawi’s history and helped push Banda out of power in 2014.

That came after she ordered an audit the previous year which discovered that $30m had been looted by officials in less than six months in 2013.

Dozens of civil servants, business people and politicians have since been implicated in the scam and some have been jailed.

International donors terminated aid of around $150m over the scandal.

Monitored/Tony Ekata/Sammie Idika